The Eagles' first album touched a cultural nerve in 1971, with songs like "Peaceful Easy Feeling" and "Witchy Woman." And the hits never stopped. Despite mounting criticism from critics and fans alike, within five years they rolled those hits into one of the biggest selling Greatest Hits albums of all time.
But, a strange thing happened. The more teens blasted "Take It Easy" from the rolled-down windows of their parent's car, the more critics said they were too slick, too professional, and lacking the rough edges that revealed a chink in their armor.
To be fair, their biggest hits eclipsed that deeper cuts that might have revealed a different side.
Underneath it all, the ire might be about something more personal. Did the band follow the money instead of guiding a generation who looked to music to understand a turbulent world of post-60's angst -- JFK, Vietnam, MLK, Watergate? Did the band lack a soul?
Either way, that was a long time ago. Now, the Eagles are bringing their 2018 North American Tour to Hartford on October 6. Deacon Frey will replace his late father, Glenn.
The bigger question now is whether the early animosity still matters.
- Eric Lichter - Singer, songwriter, instrumentalist and owner of Dirt Floor Recording Studio in Chester, CT
- Robert Christgau - Pioneer in rock journalism. His newest book is Going Into the City: Portrait of a Critic as a Young Man
- Nathan Rabin - Writer and author of several books, including most recently, You Don't Know Me But You Don't Like Me: Phish, Insane Clown Posse, and My Misadventures with Two of Music's Most Maligned Tribes
Colin McEnroe, Chion Wolf, and Jonathan McNicol contributed to this show.